According to published reports, Arizona-based road technology safety company, Redflex Traffic Systems, will install and maintain the signal cameras. The new automated system will monitor traffic using radar and alert authorities when a vehicle has been identified as having run the red light.
The systems works when a vehicle enters the intersection after the traffic light turns red. The automated camera will snap high-resolution images on the vehicle and the driver. These images will then be sent to police who will carefully review the images before issuing citations. The cost of a fine for running a red light in Alabama is now $100. Phenix City will collect the fine and pay a portion of the revenue they collect to Redflex Traffic Systems. In this way the city plans that the new automated traffic camera system will not require the use any public funds to operate.
These automated traffic monitoring systems are proving cost effective for communities which use them. Nearly every community which has installed them has seen revenue increase as a result of the system. They also require fewer police labor hours used just for monitoring traffic, meaning those officers can be working to make the community safe in other ways.
These automated system are being constantly improved and their sensitivity and ability to produce high-resolution images increased. As the systems improve it seems likely more communities will embrace the new technology as a way to increase revenue and save money.